Much-fancied Brazil look to get their FIFA World Cup campaign underway with the much anticipated Brazil Vs Switzerland fixture in Russia.
Stadium: Rostov Arena Time(GMT): 11:30 p.m. Group: E
The FIFA World Cup kicked off in style with a 5-0 win for hosts Russia against Saudi Arabia in the very first match of the tournament and there has been no looking back since then. As expected, lots of unexpected events are taking place already and still more are waiting to come.
Group E consists of Costa Rica and Serbia other than Brazil and Switzerland. Group E fixtures kick-off on the same day with the Costa Rica Vs Serbia game ahead of the Brazil Vs Switzerland tie.
With Brazil and Switzerland are the most likely teams to qualify for the next round in their group, this fixture could decide the leader of the group going into the Round of 16.
Brazil and Switzerland’s last and only encounter in a World Cup was in 1950 on the Brazilian soil which ended in a 2-2 draw. But, since then Brazil Vs Switzerland fixtures have taken place for seven more times with Brazil winning 3 times, losing twice and two games ending in a tie.
The five-time champions will be looking for redemption after being humiliated 7-1 by Germany in the Semi-finals of the 2014 FIFA World Cup that took place on the Brazilian soil.
The Selecao look to have returned to their best under coach Tite being the first team to qualify for the biggest stage of football. Brazil have lost only one of their qualifying matches while winning 12 of the games out of 18.
They are one of the favourites to win the World Cup, for a record sixth time and look really impressive under the management of head coach Tite.
Stats for Brazil NT:
Neymar: 85 games, 55 goals & 33 assists
Philippe Coutinho: 37 games, 10 goals & 5 assists
Gabriel Jesus: 17 games, 10 goals & 5 assists
Canarinhos' attacking force is terrifying! ?? pic.twitter.com/KJqxyVt8fR
— FootballTalentScout (@FTalentScout) June 10, 2018
Moreover, Brazil boasts of a deadly and lethal front-line of Neymar, Philippe Coutinho, Gabriel Jesus, Roberto Firminho, Willian and Douglas Costa, with each being threatening enough to wreck havoc on any defense by themselves. Also, their defense and midfield look pretty amazing too with the presence of Thiago Silva, Miranda, Marcelo, Filipe Luis, Marquinhos, Casemiro, Fernandinho, etc.
Neymar (Paris St. Germain)
Being the costliest player on the planet, this man needs no introduction. Obviously being one of the most important pieces of the Brazil squad, Neymar will have major responsibilities on his shoulders and will have to deliver either by assisting for a goal or by scoring himself.
— Footballnus (@footballnus) June 10, 2018
Neymar is back from injury having scored in two of the warm-up games for Brazil and is back in form with immediate effect. Seeing Neymar playing on the pitch, it reminds us of the Gaucho football that Brazil played in the last century – those alienistic skills, the magical dribbles, the actual definition of what we know as The Beautiful Game.
With Brazil looking their strongest since the 2006 FIFA World Cup, Neymar should be playing at his best and give a repetition of the performances he showed for PSG this season.
Thiago Silva (Paris St. Germain)
The PSG defender will be their main man in defense to stop any recurrence of the 2014 World Cup nightmare. Thiago Silva has averaged 4.3 clearances and 1.1 tackles per game with overall rating of over 7 for PSG this season. This kind of performance or may be better is needed if Brazil hope to win the FIFA World Cup 2018 Russia starting with tonight’s Brazil Vs Switzerland clash.
"I told #Neymar that after the bad moment he was living, there will come a moment of glory. I told him this in front of the whole group, and he worked so hard to recover in time, and now he's with us for the World Cup." pic.twitter.com/MdET1QpVTk
— Seleção Brasileira (@BrazilStat) June 14, 2018
Silva needs to be rock solid and will be entrusted with the duty of holding the back-line aligned and organised. Moreover, Brazil are more confident now and have moved over the 7-1 demolition as was stated by Thiago Silva in a press conference.
“The 7-1 is no longer in our heads, we have the level to be world champions again and re-write our history,”
Standing in Brazil’s way is the sixth placed team in the world, Switzerland after winning nine games in a row en route to Russia during the qualifying rounds.
Switzerland stand unbeaten coming into the biggest tournament of football including a 1-1 draw against Spain in the warm-up matches.
Moreover, head coach Vladimir Petkovic has admitted that he will be taking special measures for Neymar as well as other Brazilian forwards, leading Switzerland into a FIFA World Cup for the first time for tonight’s Brazil Vs Switzerland game. Petkovic was quoted as saying:
“Of course Neymar is an exceptional player,”
“We have to prepare mentally to play against such strong players.”
#Switzerland coach Vladimir Petkovic said his side must be prepared to win ugly in Sunday’s World Cup Group E opener against the footballing beauty of #Brazil and their talented forward line, led by the dazzling #Neymar https://t.co/wzls0mov1a pic.twitter.com/ibY6BiWdp5
— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) June 16, 2018
However, Switzerland will be without talented Wolfsburg forward Admir Mehmedi due to an injury.
Xherdan Shaqiri (Stoke City)
Undoubtedly one of the best football talents, the Stoke City winger is blessed with a strong left foot and very accurate with set-pieces and finishing. According to stats, he has averaged a shot accuracy of 62% and pass accuracy of 81% this season, which is pretty good for a player playing in a struggling Stoke City team.
— Xherdan Shaqiri (@XS_11official) June 16, 2018
Also nicknamed the Alpine Messi, the Swiss winger will be the key player for opponent defenses to be wary off. Being an expert set-piece taker, he can unlock defenses and can take Switzerland to greater heights including tonight in Brazil Vs Switzerland clash.
Ricardo Rodriguez (AC Milan)
The left-back is known to be very strong holding onto the ball and for his tackling abilities. With his side kicking off their World Cup campaign with the Brazil Vs Switzerland fixture, it will be challenging for the full-back against the likes of Neymar, Coutinho, Jesus. But the defender has shown his maturity and ability to cope with pressure.
Alongside his defensive skills, Ricardo Rodriguez offers great threat in set-pieces as well as free-kicks and is an accurate crosser of the ball. The 25 year-old enjoys going forward and help in attacks with the knack of scoring goals like he did against Spain, scoring the only goal for his country in the match.
? | Ricardo Rodriguez’s goal against Spain ???⚫️pic.twitter.com/WHBhBvx4gd
— Milan Eye (@MilanEye) June 3, 2018
This FIFA World Cup might be his time to shine and will be one of the key Swiss players for tonight’s Brazil Vs Switzerland.
After analysing all sides of the game, I would go for a 3-0 win for Brazil. Even with the difficulties present, Brazil Vs Switzerland game will be a walk in the park for this Brazil side.